Holiday shopping is in full swing and now more than ever consumers are feeling the heat of buying the perfect present thanks to commercials and retailers vying for the upper hand in the market. With so many ways to save and earn money over the holiday spending season, having a good handle on your money is of the utmost importance.
Create and Stick to Your Budget
Budgets are the talk of the town these days and understanding how to properly setup a budget is key in any situation. Not only in your personal life but when planning a vacation or planning holiday spending. When you’re in debt it can feel like a choice between paying the bills and buying gifts but a balance of the two and realistic budget will ease that stress and help you cope with the Holiday Financial stress you’re likely experiencing.
Get Creative This Season While Reducing Stress
A great way to offset holiday budget blues is to create your gifts. From cookie baskets, blankets, and handmade wearables like hats and mittens the gift is unique, handmade, and sentimental. It’s also cheaper for the wallet and the creative outlet will reduce stress taking your mind off of the initial problem of money and allow you to cope with financial stress this holiday season. If you’re worried your lack of creative skill will hinder this, you can always check out Pinterest for simple how-to’s that won’t break the bank.
Share Your Insight during the Materialistic Holiday’s
If money is your issue this season be sure to let others in when it comes to spending and expectations. Setting a budget or limit on gifts is often easiest on everyone and no one is put in a position to take out a payday loan or advance to ensure the ridiculously materialistic holiday spending season is not a source of real disdain.
- Be honest if you’re unable to budget large amounts for holiday spending.
- Set a family budget that all should comply with.
- If acceptable for all involved make it a ‘kids only’ holiday and focus buying solely on the children in your family.
Remember What Holidays Are About
Reducing stress also comes in the form of spending time with people that mean something to you. Even if you’re not going to participate in gift giving and have given the appropriate notice that you would rather spend time together than spend money, then don’t feel the need to forego holiday parties because you’re not gifting. In fact, skipping holiday get-togethers can add to stress thanks to urge to stay inside. Spending time with family and getting out of the house are ways to cope with holiday financial stress and improve mood and self-image.
Don’t Blow Your Budget this Season, Blow Their Minds.
Parents want to give their children everything they didn’t have as kids which is understandable and common in today’s society. The only problem is the fact that children are conditioned to expect things only if the parents allow them to do so. If they expect a large amount of gifts every year, this is due to parents creating this expectations in their early years of life. Instead of breaking the bank to buy little Johnny and Sally the latest version of whatever device they’re after, teach them now to expect less and give more. This will raise their morale as adults and save your wallet, a trend that is much easier to deal with than the mounting credit card bills thanks to another overspent holiday.
Regardless of studies proving spoiled brats are better paid as adults, the reality is the cost of holidays shouldn’t be a source of stress if you’re teaching them now it’s not what you get every year but rather what you give and the time you get to spend with those you love. A most often forgotten sentiment of the holidays in the first place. Creating an expectation of materialistic happiness will follow them as they grow and for those that overspend, so will their parents debt when they can’t afford to create a college fund. Instead
- Enforce the giving rather than getting ideal
- Give them gifts that enhance their skills and passions
- Keep expectation low and the true meaning of the holidays in front of them.
Give Time Instead of Gifts
If you’re really looking for a way to beat the stress of holiday spending volunteering can be a wonderful gift for less those less fortunate. You can donate your time on behalf of someone close to you say a relative that may receive services from the VA. Consider your skills is there something you can do better than others? Do you know a thing or two about saving money? Maybe a chess protégé looking for someone to share time with at the board? Whatever it is going to the local VA, Nursing homes, homeless shelters, wherever they accept unique services such as the above and consider donating your time. The gift will keep giving especially if your chess opponent has little family to visit him or her this holiday.